Carrie Rengers

South-side polo center down to its last hurdle

A rezoning request Jack Shelton first sought in Summer 2008 for his Prairie Polo at 95th South and Broadway has now been approved by the planning commission and is on its way to the County Commission for final approval.

"We got a lot of slack the first time we went through it," Shelton says.

Part of the problem was that he needed approval from the city of Haysville first, which he now has.

More than a decade ago, Shelton put two polo fields on his 125 acres.

More recently, his goal was to attract people for lessons.

Shelton is former chairman of the United States Polo Association .

This year, the association approved Prairie Polo as a regional training center for the Midwest.

But Shelton ran into difficulties when he erected signs to attract potential students.

"You gotta get approval on everything," he says.

His goal is to have a planned unit development to allow numerous things on the property.

Shelton already restored one 100-year-old barn to use as a school, and he plans to build more.

"We hope the school grows and becomes something," he says.

Shelton says Wink Hartman Sr. , his friend and former polo competitor, helped him build an arena at Prairie Polo.

It's "what I call the small Hartman arena," Shelton says in reference to the Hartman Arena in Park City.

Except Shelton says he never expects his to be a booming business.

"There's no money in this deal.... The only money I'm doing is putting out money."

'Heck of a deal'

Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos. is trying to sell a 5,000-square-foot retail center at 180 S. Rock Road for his father, Mike Boyd , and another investor, and he thinks there are several things going for the property.

First, he says, it's behind the Wendy's across from Towne East Square and is only $350,000.

"It's a heck of a deal for a Rock Road address."

Also, with the addition of iPlum Wireless last week, the center is now 100 percent leased.

With rent below market price, Boyd says, "It's easy to keep full in an environment like this."

But the environment also means buyers aren't rushing to purchase anything.

"We've had investors interested," Boyd says. "It's just people are a little gun-shy these days with the economy and everything."

You don't say

"It takes 20 acts of Congress to turn a dime in."

—The response from a tour guide at the new Boot Hill Casino and Resort in Dodge City after someone gave her a found dime, which she held away from her as if it were poison and which took 10 minutes of paperwork to turn in